John Wall plans to graduate from Kentucky while recovering from ruptured Achilles

Ben WeinribYahoo Sports Contributor
<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nba/teams/washington/" data-ylk="slk:Wizards">Wizards</a> point guard <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nba/players/4716/" data-ylk="slk:John Wall">John Wall</a> plans to finish his degree at Kentucky in the next year. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Wizards point guard John Wall plans to finish his degree at Kentucky in the next year. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Washington Wizards point guard John Wall will have over a year to recover from his ruptured Achilles tendon, and he plans to use that time well.

The five-time All-Star told reporters on Friday that he plans to use that time to work towards completing his undergraduate business degree in addition to working on his rehab.

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Wall, the first person in his family to go to college, spent one year at Kentucky before entering the NBA draft, where the Wizards selected him first overall. He will return to Lexington this summer to finish the remaining credits.

Wall has spoken before about his desire to graduate from college. In January 2018, Wall wrote a letter to his late father for The Undefeated in which he talked about the importance of education that was impressed upon him.

“I know you’re proud of the man I’ve become,” Wall wrote. “I’m the first in our family to attend college, and although I have not yet completed my degree, it is a goal that I hope to accomplish. My sister followed behind to become the first in our family to graduate from college and went on to get her master’s.”

Although Wall has not decided what he will do with his degree when his basketball career is over, he wants to keep his options open. In an earlier interview with the Washington Post, Wall spoke about wanting to use his platform to do as much good as possible.

“When our career is over, when we retire and the basketball stops bouncing, we still have to find something else to do,” Wall said. “Whether you want to be a general manager, a doctor, a businessman, whatever, you have to believe on everything you stand on. We’re more than athletes and the stuff that’s going on in our society and in this world, we have to speak on it. I think we have the right to say whatever we want.”

What will the Wizards do without Wall?

Injuries have been an all-too-common part of life for Wall. Over his nine years in the league, Wall has faced 11 major injuries, according to NBC Sports, including a heel surgery that sidelined him before he slipped at home and ruptured his Achilles. But as long as the Wizards are tied to his untradeable four-year, $170 million contract, he will remain a key part of their core.

The Wizards came into the season with playoff aspirations and made a 180 after Wall’s heel injury. They traded Otto Porter Jr. and the more than $55 million remaining on his contract for the next two seasons and Markieff Morris to get under the luxury tax line.

Washington will move forward with Tomas Satoransky as their starting point guard, and Wall may return before the end of the 2019-20 season. Wall will have a lot to focus on during his recovery, but the next time he suits up for the Wizards, he will likely be one degree more decorated.

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